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Full text of "Laughing Torso"

LAUGHING    TORSO

to it once with Basil in 1914.   Betty had married
recently her fourth husband, a most brilliant young
man called Raoul Loveday, who was only twenty
and had got a first in history at Oxford.   He was
very good-looking, but looked half dead.   She was
delighted to meet me and we all sat in the Dome
and drank.   They were on their way to Cefalu as
Crowley had offered him a job as his secretary.   He
was very much intrigued with Crowley's views on
magic.   He had been very ill the year before and
had had a serious operation.   I had heard that the
climate at Cefalu was terrible;  heat, mosquitoes,
and very bad food.   The magical training I already
knew was very arduous.   I urged them not to go.
I succeeded in keeping them in Paris two days
longer than they intended, but they were deter-
mined to go and I was powerless to prevent them.
I told Raoul that if he went he would die, and really
felt a horrible feeling of gloom when I said " Good-
bye " to them.   After five months I had a postcard
from Betty on which was written, " My husband
died last Friday; meet me at the Gare de Lyon."
I could not meet her as I got the postcard a day too
late and she went straight through to London.   He
died of fever.   There were no doctors at Cefalu and
one had to be got from Palermo, but it was too late
when he arrived.   There is a long and very interest-
ing description of life in Cefalu in  Tiger Woman,
Betty May's life story, but not half so good as the
way in which she told me the story herself.
Cecil Maitland and Mary Butts were very much
interested in Crowley and went to Cefalu.   Everyone
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